My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Source: Received from Publisher to Review
Genre: Contemporary Christian Fiction
Book Description: A Tender Contemporary Romance about Finding Unexpected Love
When a Lost Child warning blasts over the mall's PA system, toy store manager Carly Mason finds the little girl playing with a stuffed rabbit. Something about five-year-old Penny Tremaine is different. An ex-social worker, Carly recognizes that Penny suffers fetal alcohol effects, and a piece of Carly's own past suddenly confronts her. Never again will Carly become involved with a client. The risks are far too great. But something about Penny--and Penny's handsome father--tugs at Carly's heart. Before she has time to think it through, she agrees to a much-needed job as a nanny.
Dr. Ryan Tremaine knows he messed up his life. But this summer he will redeem himself. With his ex-wife remarried and on a trip far away, his two teenage sons and Penny are living under his roof full time. Ryan is dedicated to his sink-or-swim list, a plan to reconnect with his children. The first step: recruiting Carly Mason to be Penny's nanny.
Ryan never anticipated being so drawn to Carly, an attraction Carly seems to fight as much as he does. Could Carly be the missing piece that helps his family stay afloat, or will their blossoming romance only complicate things further?
My thoughts: This book drew me in from the very first page.
I felt that Ryan and Carly were portrayed realistically and I liked them as individuals. Together they were better than they were alone. Both Ryan and Carly have mistakes from their past that limit their ability to move on in life.
Ryan had an affair that resulted in a child with FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder). The affair ended his marriage. His daughter, Penny, is a hand full. I couldn't help fall in love with her character. She has so much to give, but is often misunderstood.
The book begins with Penny missing in a mall. He entrusted her care to his son from his marriage. It soon becomes apparent that his family is in crisis. This is where Carly comes in. She has the knowledge and the love to bring this family off of the brink and help them love and accept each other.
This book didn't have instant love, but it did have instant attraction. The major theme of the book is about forgiving yourself from past mistakes and trusting God. Ryan is agnostic, but Carly has a deep love and faith in her Savior.
I enjoyed this book and I am grateful to Bethany House for providing me with a review copy.
About the author (taken from her Webpage): Known for her realistic, likable characters and vivid writing, Victoria Bylin writes both western and contemporary inspirational romance. Her books have finaled in the ACFW Carol Awards, the Rita Awards and RT Magazine’s Reviewers’ Choice Awards. She and her husband currently live in Lexington, Kentucky and have two grown sons.